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It’s been a looooooong, hot day

May 13, 2011

Where to start. I only got about 2 hours of sleep in total last night (or more accurately very early this morning), spent 4 hours sitting in a car, and about 20 minute laying in a very loud tube. I am so drained it’s not even funny. My thighs were spazzing the entire way to the MRI and I couldn’t do any stretches to help so I just tried to suck it up until I could get out of the car and move around a bit. I ended up getting to the clinic much earlier than I expected (about an hour early, traffic was nowhere near as bad as I thought it would be) so I had time to get a cold drink and rub it on my legs which really helped with the pain. I didn’t have time to eat breakfast though so I was just running on a coffee and a donut all morning.

The drive up was very pleasant. I wasn’t overly nervous, the scenery was nice, I just got uncomfortable staying seated for that long without being able to stretch out my legs to keep them from cramping up so badly. There was a cool breeze though so at least I wasn’t getting too hot.

I’m pretty impressed with that clinic. It’s very well run and maintained and the staff were really nice (the woman that did my test chuckled at my F.U. MS shirt )…yes that was a link, click it and get a shirt to support a good cause. *ahem* Anywho! my appointment was for 10:50am and I was called in from the waiting room by 11:00am. I got changed into the metal-free gown and sat in the change room for a bit stretching and massaging my legs then got brought into the actual MRI room.

The machine was pretty big, but for some reason I expected it to be bigger. It was about the same size at the CT scanner and the table that I had to lay on was actually really comfortable. I had to put on a hair net then lay down with a triangular pillow under my knees (I laid down with one hip raised slightly, the same position I usually sleep in, to keep my tremors to a minimum). I put on the headphones (they had some really nice music playing during the test actually, very relaxing, but warned me that the test would sound like a jackhammer) then they closed the cage over my face. They handed me the emergency bell and told me to press it if I started to panic or feel my tattoos getting hot. If I had a panic attack they would give me a valium, but I didn’t need it and it would have just upset my stomach so no bother. Then they slid me into the tub and got the show on the road.

I can understand how this test would be really hard for someone to do if they are claustrophobic, but I have no anxiety about small spaces and like feeling cocooned so it was actually kind of nice in that sense. When they started taking the pictures, it was extremely loud though (it drowned out the music). It didn’t sound like a jackhammer though. It was more like… think about every horrible, annoying alarm clock you’ve ever heard, then imagine them all going off one after another at pull blast right beside your head. Every now and then it sounded like someone was banging on the side of the machine with a hammer. Despite all the noise though I almost fell asleep during the test. There was a little strip of mirror on the cage so I could see out into the room (to help claustrophobic patients) but since I couldn’t wear my glasses I couldn’t see anything anyway so I just laid there with my eyes closed for most of it. They had some fans going in the room pointed towards the machine so there was a nice cool breeze for the entire test. When the pictures were over, the mic clicked on:
“Uhh……just a sec, I want to take another look at your pictures….”
Something about the tone was off. It seemed like they found something. We will find out soon when the in-town neuro gets the results and I see him for the last time.

Once I left the clinic though things were kind of bad. It had gotten very hot and humid out very quickly. I was ok until about halfway home. I started to feel really foggy again, tremors and spasms came back in my hands and legs, lots of tingling, and the one-sided facial numbness I’ve had for the past few days got more noticable. I lost that ability to sense to location of my feet, left leg, and hands several times. My left arm felt like I smashed my funny bone and that pain spread throughout my entire arm (it felt swollen but it wasn’t). I could only understand about 20% of what was said to me and I was having a really REALLY hard time finding my words and was slurring a bit. I got that wet feeling at lot on the parts of my legs I could feel (mainly the tops of my feet and my upper thighs, which sort of made it feel like I had lost control of my bladder).

When I got home I got a message from the big time hospital, so I called them back to confirm my first appointment with the new neurologist up there (end of June), did some stretching with a basketball (I put it under my feet so I can press down on it, then roll it in little circles with my feet, gradually making bigger circles until my legs are straightened out), went out to get something to eat (since I was way too exhausted to cook and being around a hot stove would not have helped my situation) then laid down for a wee nap on the couch. I’m still feeling kind of funny in some ways (it feels like the muscles in my legs are vibrating and the skin on my legs is tingling). I’m still horribly exhausted (I really need to catch up on my sleep tonight) but I am unbelievably happy right now for one reason:

I’m not in pain.

I’m weak, but I’m not hurting anywhere. No migraines, no painful contractions, no funnybone-type pain. There is still a lot of numbess, but I don’t mind. I can get up and walk if I want to without planning my path around objects to cling onto if a sudden painful spasm strikes. I can walk almost normally now actually, no more limp or dragging feet (well….still dragging a little but that’s from fatigue not pain). So, I think I’m going to lay down again for a litlte bit, get up and do some stretches, have a little snack then go to bed.

This day was kind of back and forth for a while, but overall it turned out really well. Feeling fairly good and looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow and waking up hopefully feeling even better than I am now šŸ™‚

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